We all know that Obama has been threatening/promising that “if Congress doesn’t act” then he will. He’s got the magic pen and the magic phone and he is going to used them.
But keep in mind that not only has Obama been making these statements, but he has made them in a certain way with a certain tone. When he talks about taking action, he says it like someone who is completely confident that Americans are tired of government inaction and would welcome his intervention.
The assumed context of President Obama’s words is that we are all waiting desperately to be rescued by him from our circumstances and from our do-nothing Congress
Is that true?
Not according to a recent CNN Poll:
In general, would you rather see Barack Obama attempt to reach a bipartisan compromise with Congress on major issues, or would you rather see Obama take unilateral action without Congress to make changes in government policy that are not supported by Republicans?
In answer to this question 67 percent of respondents said that they preferred for the President to “attempt to reach a bipartisan compromise with Congress.” Only thirty percent wanted the President to “take unilateral action without Congress.”
That isn’t too bad for a group of whom only 22 percent identified themselves as Republican, while 41 percent identified themselves as Democrats. Assuming that all independents, along with all Republicans, want the President to compromise with Congress, even a few Democrats do not want the President to resort to unilateral executive action.
Perhaps this doesn’t mean that everyone is opposed to unilateral action in principle. An article at the Daily Caller suggests that perhaps some are worried that President Obama will fail if he tries to rely on executive powers.
Perhaps they felt Obama’s plan for executive action wouldn’t pan out. Just 8 percent thought the array of programs and plans the president outlined were “very likely” to be enacted. Forty-five percent chose “somewhat likely” to become law while 46 percent responded with “not too likely” or “not likely at all.”
I’m not sure if that is what was going on or not. If the Daily Caller is right, it means that many at least now realize how little he gets done compare to how much he talks. That shows some progress.
I will say this: we have a lot of work ahead of us for 2014 and 2016. I thought other aspects of that poll showed that still too many people are far too trusting of President Obama. The fact that the poll has almost twice as many Democrats as Republicans helps explain some of that.
But we need to get busy and stay energetic in the coming months.